Despite what the final result may indicate, Juventus actually put in a decent effort against Cagliari few days after the title-clincher, but it was one of those in the box where they would not have been able to score even if they played one more hour.
Alex Sandro: tough to find a good contributor among defenders, as the back-line collectively fell asleep (again) on the initial goal, where Cagliari players were allowed to pass the ball from one flank to the other and then back to the middle for a tap-in without much opposition. Leonardo Bonucci and Gianluigi Buffon then were both poor on the Giovanni Simeone goal, as the centre-back should have stayed closer and the goalie had his hands bent. Since it is often hard to notice that Daniele Rugani is even playing, the nod goes to Alex Sandro, who was moderately active offensively and has become a sneaky asset on set pieces with his headers.
Rodrigo Bentancur: he was the most active among the trio in the midfield, tried to lead the charge and contributed in both phases, but he and Miralem Pjanic’s efforts were not enough to turn the game around. Simone Muratore was a little timid but that is understandable and that role is pretty tricky as, more often than not, he found himself uncomfortably on the flank. Juan Cuadrado was instead decently energetic but not very precise when it came to launching crosses. Still an improvement for him after a pair of duds.
Luca Zanimacchia: arguably the top performer of the night as he subbed in with authority and created havoc with his slaloms down the right flank. He was incredibly assertive for a youngster making his debut and he is one keep tabs on. He had the best chance of the night with a cannon shot in top corner and only a superb save by Alessio Cragno denied him. As imaginable, Cristiano Ronaldo obsessively looked to score and fired off double-digit attempts, but was rarely precise and often too stubborn. Time to throw in the towel as Ciro Immobile struck again. Federico Bernardeschi failed to follow up his rare goal with a fully satisfying outing, although he tried to get something going and engineered few chances when the team laid siege, while Gonzalo Higuain was once again held in heck too easily by a back-line that does not exactly oozes talent.
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